Stem Cells Derived from Amniotic Fluid

Mara Cananzi, Anthony Atala, Paolo de Coppi

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


In this chapter, we provide an overview of the potential advantages and disadvantages of different stem and progenitor cell populations identified to date in amniotic fluid, along with their properties and potential clinical applications. In the last ten years, placenta, fetal membranes (i.e., amnion and chorion), and amniotic fluid have been investigated as potentially uncontroversial sources of stem cells. Such tissues are typically discarded after delivery or are accessible during pregnancy through amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling. Cell populations having multilineage differentiation potential and immunomodulatory properties have been isolated from the human placenta and fetal membranes, including human amniotic epithelial cells (hAECs), human amniotic mesenchymal stromal cells (hAMSCs), human chorionic mesenchymal stromal cells (hCMSCs), and human chorionic trophoblastic cells (hCTCs). From amniotic fluid (AF), two stem cell populations have been isolated: amniotic fluid mesenchymal stem cells (AFMSCs) and amniotic fluid stem (AFS) cells. It is possible that these cells may, given the easier accessibility of AF in comparison with other extra-embryonic tissues, hold much promise in regenerative medicine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEssentials of Stem Cell Biology
Subtitle of host publicationThird Edition
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9780124104273
ISBN (Print)9780124095038
StatePublished - 2014


  • Amniotic fluid
  • Cell surface antigens
  • Fetal origin
  • Hematopoietic progenitor cells
  • Mesenchymal stem cells
  • Multilineage potential
  • Transcriptome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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